wind i h8 it

Sunday, March 29, 2009 

/Media Card/BlackBerry/pictures/wind i h8 it.jpg
Posted at 16:00:12 GMT-0700

Category: Related Links

Rental Hummer H3

Thursday, March 26, 2009 

Odd vehicle awaited me at Hertz when I got in: H3. It isn’t that big, drives like a normal SUV. The faux-armor windows are a bit odd from the inside and it has, therefore, less visibility than a normal SUV, but otherwise seems like any suburban 4WD luxury minivan-ish truck conversion. Maybe there are some challenging roads around Guelph…

Posted at 01:00:15 GMT-0700

Category: NeutralphotoRental carsReviews

New coffee machine at BOS RCC does not suck

Sunday, March 22, 2009 

The new espresso machine at the Boston Red Carpet Club does not actually suck. It wouldn’t win any contests against a decent cafe, but it is as good as the starbucks with the espresso automats that seem to have taken over the airports.

/Media Card/BlackBerry/pictures/IMG00019-20090322-1544.jpg
Posted at 16:00:14 GMT-0700

Category: GeopostphotoPlanesPositiveReviews

Google Sync For Mobile Works, “Sync” Fails

Friday, March 20, 2009 

I used to be very happy with Google Sync. It worked great and got my outlook calendar to my google calendar reliably and easily. And with google’s gears-based offline calendar, my calendar life seemed complete.
Until… it just didn’t sync. Not at all. I was always disappointed it would only sync to my default calendar, but not syncing at all, well that just sucks.

sync for mobile.jpg

So I tried Sync for my blackberry. It worked perfectly (so far) and lets me choose which calendar to send my data to, which is perfect for keeping work and personal calendars separate and allows me do bidirectional sync without populating my work calendar with embarrassing personal events.

The only problem is that I tried to sync my contacts from Google Contacts. That was bad, mmmkay, because Google contacts SAID it would parse VCAL files, so I exported a vcal directory from Mulberry mail (and you know Cyrus got the format perfect to the letter) and google read every VCAL field as an entry, so I had 1200 people named BEGIN: VCAL, and 1200 people named END… etc.

mail contacts.png

Now Google, in their unfathomable wisdom, only lets you delete 500 entries at a time. Which means individually ticking the entries one at a time until there are less than 500 identical entries (like BEGIN: VCAL) which can then be bulk deleted. That was not happening. I tried, thus, to sync 8,000 plus entries to my blackberry and that did not work… that’s why there is the “fail” notice.

But somebody pointed out that you can switch to the “Older Version” and from that you can delete more than 500 entries a time and this bug was fixed in the newer version to prevent such deletions. From the older version you can search and delete larger groups (at least 1324 at a time).

You may need to log out of google and log back in to propagate the deletions to the New Version.

Posted at 21:56:44 GMT-0700

Category: photoPositiveReviewsTechnology

Coffee Science Update

Wednesday, March 18, 2009 

Magnetically stirred coffee seems to be a success, but still tuning the parameters. I have a surplus temperature control module connected to a thermocouple probe to monitor the temperature.
My first attempt was confounded by not programming the controller to read a K-type thermocouple, it came set for a J-type and so the water never got over 88C even boiling… which it did for a while and that’s not good. Not good at all.
Today I let the water temp get up to 80C and the coffee was very good, smooth and not bitter at all. Perhaps a bit too smooth, a bit like the cold-brew taste but warm and much faster thanks to the stirring action. I will try 90C tomorrow and if success continues, modify the hotplate to add a direct thermal element bypass to the outside so the temp controller can control the heater directly (now I just watch and turn off the heater at the target temp.)
The theory is that by continuously stirring the coffee, a lot of flavor is extracted without relying on heat, and that the stirring also ensures uniform heating through the entire volume and thus the temperature can be set fairly precisely (to about a degree C, +/- 1 degree or so) to optimize differential extraction of the organics in the grounds.

Posted at 16:00:26 GMT-0700

Category: Related Links

Aggro Spider

Wednesday, March 18, 2009 

There was a cool looking spider (apparently Phidippus johnsoni or the literally named “red backed jumping spider” )  exploring my monitor, nice red  abdomen
what are you looking at.jpg
He sees me taking his picture and gets pissed and jumps at the camera – BAM! then jumps back to the monitor.

what are you looking at spring.jpg
Cool!  So I tried to take another shot and this time he gave me a look like “I may be small, but you’re going to regret this if you don’t leave me alone” and smacked my camera again.

what are you looking at spring want some more.jpg
Posted at 01:35:05 GMT-0700

Category: Funnyphoto

Lers ros thai

Monday, March 16, 2009 

Excellent, open until 2:00am

/Media Card/BlackBerry/pictures/IMG00008-20090316-2228.jpg
The food is really excellent.  We were taken by people visiting from Thailand, who ordered in Thai, made fun of us for using chopsticks (only for use with dishes of Chinese origin) and having Sake with our dinner, how odd.   They said “this is what we eat in Thailand when we go out.”
Good enough for me.
730 Larkin St San Francisco, CA
(415) 931-6917
Posted at 23:00:15 GMT-0700

Category: GeopostphotoPositiveReviews

Magnetically Stirred Coffee

Monday, March 9, 2009 

Tastes like science! Mmmmm. Good science! Next, instrument with a temp controller to monitor and shut off automatically.

/Media Card/BlackBerry/pictures/IMG00007-20090309-1335.jpg
The theory is that too much heat makes coffee bitter, but extraction matters, so the stirring hotplate can extract all the coffee goodness without overheating it.  The results are definitely mild, yet full flavored.  I used a paper filter to seperate the coffee from the grounds.
Just some interesting AI renditions to go along…
Posted at 14:00:22 GMT-0700

Category: Fabricationphoto

Science Fair Time Again

Monday, March 9, 2009 

Isabella likes colors. And fire. So she wanted to make colored fire. We tried a lot of different techniques, some we found on the interwebs and some we made up to make colored flames from various chemicals we got from United Nuclear.


We tried my childhood Bunsen burner with straight ethanol which didn’t work out so well. Contaminating the wick with chemicals was effective, but not in distinguishing between sample chemicals.

Read more…

Posted at 00:42:04 GMT-0700

Category: Fabricationphoto